Archive for the ‘Missy’ Category

Even brisker mornings

Monday, December 4th, 2017

We have a stunning week of sun ahead of us in the forecast and even though the temperatures are progressively colder, the bright sun is filling everyone with adventurous spirits and joyful days. As Kelsi shared in her blog yesterday, even the Queen has been braving the chill to enjoy time outside.

Despite that, when I opened the door to Young’s Hill first thing this morning I couldn’t have been more surprised to see everyone literally racing outside seemingly on a group mission. Foxie and her doll headed straight for the nearest platforms where she proceeded to play stomp and shiver her way around with a mischievous look on her face.

Here she is mid-stomp:

Jody, Annie and Burrito wasted no time heading straight for the tire swings and it didn’t take long to realize they were remembering that the cold weather brings ice treats to be found in the tire swings! I love that they remember favorite things from each season now.


Burrito found some ice pieces Annie and Jody missed:

Annie and Jody heading back toward the greenhouse with their ice chunks (Missy foreground):

Annie headed to the greenhouse:

Jamie on her way back from the business of the morning:

Annie returned to the outdoors seemingly to just enjoy the view and the feel the elements:

After Jody came inside with her ice she immediately realized that Foxie was still outside in the cold and charged back up the hill to collect her. Foxie is an adventurous soul and declined Jody’s encouragement to return to the greenhouse (much to Jody’s dismay) and continued on her way checking things out, but she eventually made her way back:

It makes my heart sing to see how the chimps embrace their days and everything they discover within each one, how adventurous and brave they’ve become, and how, well, themselves they’ve become. Winter, spring, summer and fall, they show us a new season of themselves.

Brisk Mornings

Sunday, December 3rd, 2017

Today was a beautiful brisk December morning, Jamie and I were on our usual perimeter walk. At the end of our walk I noticed Missy and Negra enjoying the warm sunshine beaming on Young’s Hill. Negra sat on a log watching Missy eat the little bit of snow left on the log, Negra then also took part in eating some snow! The Hill was pretty popular today even with the chill this morning, everyone made an appearance at one point. A little later, after I went back to the Playroom to help clean, I spotted Annie playing with the new mirror in the Greenhouse. Annie was being silly and flipping upside down and inspecting all the windows. Missy revealed herself from the cargo net near Annie, which made sense, Annie was trying to get Missy to play! It worked, they quietly played in the cargo net and I sneaked away so they could play in peace.


Missy eating snow:

Negra on the log & Missy eating snow:


Negra enjoying some snow:

Annie looking into the mirror:


Annie checking the window frames:

Missy taking a turn playing with the mirror (can you see her toes?):


Busy mornings

Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

The majority of the action at the sanctuary happens all before lunch! We use this time every day to clean each area thoroughly, asking the chimpanzees to shift from one section of the building to another. Once the chimpanzees have all vacated an area (usually convinced by the prospect of breakfast or snacks), the lead staff member of the day closes all the chimpanzee doors leading to an area using a remote controlled lever and lock system. We follow this by performing safety double checks to ensure that an area is chimp-free and doors are properly closed and locked. Only then can we enter an area for cleaning.

We started today by serving the chimpanzees some smoothie and peanuts so we could get the greenhouse area closed off for cleaning. Intern Kailie is training to be a level 3 caregiver (someone that serves meals and can interact safely with the chimpanzees). Staff member Elizabeth was training her this morning.

Once we knew we could safely enter the greenhouse, we unlocked the area and got to work!

We always switch out dirty blankets and enrichment for clean items.

And we do any necessary scrubbing!

Jamie usually acts as supervisor through one of the windows:

We put out 70 fresh blankets a day, so that means we do laundry all day long! Here’s intern Samantha keeping our washer going:

After the greenhouse cleaning comes the rest of breakfast. Today it was apples, pineapple, primate chow, and vitamins:

The lead staff member does a series of safety checks before the chimpanzees can get access to Young’s Hill in the morning. Here is Burrito entering the raceway to the outdoor enclosure first thing this morning:

Then on to cleaning the playroom! We always appreciate happy interns like Amanda!

After the playroom is scrubbed, rinsed, squeegeed, and locked, the lead staff member lets the chimpanzees have access back to their fresh clean area. This morning the chimps enjoyed a forage of nuts. Missy found the pineapple top we also put out.

Then comes more safety checks to enter the front rooms. Here Kailie checks to make sure a door lever is closed and locked:

It was about this time that Jamie decided she was ready for her first walk around Young’s Hill. She had me put on these ankle boots today:

Then we set out for a walk accompanied by Missy:

Meanwhile, our hardworking interns finished cleaning the front rooms. Locking and double checking all the doors is the last step in the process:

We are so lucky to have such amazing volunteers and interns! We couldn’t do it without them or our amazing supporters! Yesterday was Giving Tuesday and we exceeded both our goals for the day! There is just so much love and support that surrounds these seven chimpanzees!

The Seven Reasons Why

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

The love of Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest donors never ceases to amaze me.

You all exceeded the $15,000 goal for Giving Tuesday, and there are still several hours left in the day, so I’ve bumped up the goal to $20,000!

I know why you’re so generous. It’s the same seven reasons that motivate me.


burrito sitting



annie in yoga pose



Jody in fall grass



Negra eating pomegranate



foxie biting dora








and their lives at the sanctuary:


Annie Giving Tuesday



Sixth Day of Thanks, Featuring Karen & Missy

Sunday, November 26th, 2017

Today is the sixth day of thanks highlighting seven different donors and their seven ways of donating + the seven chimpanzees at the sanctuary!

Today I give thanks to major donor Karen Emmerman Mazner and I share some photos of the always busy Missy.

For a recap of the first five posts, day one featured legacy donor Bruce Davidson + Burrito, day two featured event donor Kathy Cochran + Annie, day three featured recurring donor Julie Olson + Jody, day four featured challenge and competition donor Monica Best + Negra, and yesterday, day five, featured wish list donor Vicki Fagerlee + Foxie.

We were thrilled to have Karen as our honoree at this year’s HOOT! gala, and she gave the best speech that explained why she decided to give a large contribution towards the Bring Them Home Campaign for Expansion. Here’s just a bit of what she said (it still gives me goosebumps):

If you’re a person who, like me, tears up when watching the videos of Foxie with her Troll dolls, Burrito being goofy, and Jamie bossing everyone around and you want more Foxies, Burritos, and Jamies to live out their lives with Troll dolls, goofiness, and bossing humans around then please join me in supporting CSNW’s efforts to bring more chimpanzees home to sanctuary.

I want more chimpanzees to know that their lives have changed for the better because they feel it in their new environment, in the people who care for them, and in the grass beneath their feet.  They feel it every time they say “no” and a human says “ok, your body belongs to you” instead of “I’m doing it anyway.”

Karen has put a lot of trust in us to fulfill our shared goal of providing a home for more chimpanzees. She knows that we’ve faced some headwinds in our efforts towards this goal. We were really hoping that 2017 would be the year that we would welcome more chimpanzees to CSNW, but we are okay working on a different timeline. We remain determined to do whatever we can to help the remaining chimpanzees in laboratories find their sanctuary home. We are eager to break ground for the Phase 1 construction of the expansion next year, which will benefit the seven chimpanzees already here in addition to preparing for more chimps. Karen’s donation will make that possible.


Missy seemed like an appropriate chimpanzee to feature with this post. She takes full advantage of all that the sanctuary has to offer. Obstacles simply do not deter her – she’ll find a way around them or just conquer them.

Young’s Hill, the chimpanzees two-acre habitat, was named after past major donors Karen and Don Young, who donated a large gift to get the hill construction started, in addition to other large gifts for other projects like the greenhouse and the veterinary clinic trailer.

Missy loves Young’s Hill. She especially seems to enjoy the first exploration of the day. I tried to get some photos of Missy on the hill yesterday morning. This is always a challenge, because she is usually a blur of motion. She ran, climbed, and swung from one structure to another – leaving virtually nothing untouched.

She would stop very briefly when she reached a destination, quickly survey her surroundings, and then leap away again to continue her exploration.

Between friends

Monday, November 20th, 2017

Early this morning began with a little snow, then an utter downpour, which has turned into a chilly, but sunny afternoon. Jamie, unphased by the chill in the air, has kept staff caregiver, Kelsi, busy walking all afternoon. In the meantime, the other chimps have been enjoying quiet moments with one another in sunny spots indoors.

Good friends, Burrito and Foxie, enjoying some grooming time in the greenhouse:

Annie (background) and best friend, Missy, enjoying one another’s company in the sun coming into the raceway which leads onto Young’s Hill:

Jody was also in the raceway, but decidedly NOT with a friend. When I walked up to the tunnel I saw her intently looking at something with concern while avoiding touching the ground:

The second Jody saw me coming she clung to the caging, eyes big, hair standing on end and asking me for reassurance before running inside. I thought it might be a snake and when I went to check it out I found, well, not quite a snake, but still…:

Happy Birthday, Kery!

Saturday, November 18th, 2017

Today was sponsored by long-time supporter and friend to the chimps, Kery Shaw! Kery shared this lovely message about her gift:

“Today, as I celebrate my birthday I take this moment to reflect on my life and think about all the incredible beings that have come into my life over the past couple of years. November … a time for giving thanks and gratitude. To the chimps: Burrito, Jamie, Jody, Annie, Missy, Foxie, and Negra who have humbled me. They have showed me how to forgive, how to have fun and mostly how to love. To Diana, JB, Katelyn and the rest of the staff and volunteers thank you for all you do and dedicating your life to these magnificent beings. Today and every day I celebrate all of you at Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest! From the bottom of my heart thank you for all you do. Much love and gratitude, Kery Shaw – The Stolen Lives Project”

Kery, given all that you do to advocate for and bring awareness and compassion to the lives of our fellow animals, we so appreciate you thinking of the chimpanzees on your own special day. We hope you have a wonderful day in which your kind heart is filled with light and joy. Happy Birthday from all the primates at CSNW!

Burrito and Jody:

Burrito and Jody with bamboo

Missy and Annie:

Jamie, Foxie and Dora:

Foxie doll on back

Negra and Foxie:

Blowing off steam

Monday, November 13th, 2017

Mornings in the chimp house have been, well, shall we say a little intense the past few days. With what seems to be an early winter, changing routines and closer quarters at mealtimes, we usually experience a little adjustment period with the changing seasons. Breakfast is often pre-empted with the normal raucous and rowdy displays and cage rattling from Burrito (with some extra flare this time of year) which leads to the usual arguments and scuffles with the girls flying after him screaming at the tops of their lungs. Then with tensions high and breakfast being served in the warmer (but smaller) front rooms, it’s been every caregiver for themselves during breakfast service which has frequently involved dodging (if you’re lucky) flying feces from the boss lady. Most of this is normal chimpanzee behavior and all of it is understandable. We all have to blow off steam sometimes.

The chimps also sometimes choose to exert some sense of control over their changing routine or avoid tension in the group by choosing to stay in areas when we are attempting to shift them to others so we can clean. This is Missy’s favorite time to stay back on her own in the playroom and hoot and holler from the loft to her hearts content. Jody also loves to bring her snack into the front rooms when she sees me attempting to close the doors. I leave the area at which point she leaves the front rooms, but the second she sees me looking that way she runs back in. But as we’ve said many times, part of the importance and beauty of sanctuary is the chimpanzees having the choice to call the shots and make their own choices as much as possible. And we’re only too happy to follow their lead.

So after the breakfast kerfuffle, When this morning dawned warmer and somewhat sunny, we couldn’t have been more thrilled for the chimps to have the chance to spend much of the day outside zooming about, racing and running with each other and their caregivers, and just getting some space from one another, taking in the sights and getting some fresh air.

And while Negra still chose to stay inside in her cozy nest, she was entertained by no less than four caregivers dancing like maniacs as she nodded along with approval. It’s been a good day.

Burrito, Annie and Foxie (below):

Burrito and Annie:

Annie checking out the comings and goings of the sanctuary:


Jody started to head back to the greenhouse with a favorite pine tree treat, but stopped short of going inside to check on all her friends. Jody spotted Foxie hanging out by herself and decided she needed to go collect her:

Jamie was thrilled to be out and about and has Kelsi running (literally) around the hill all the live long day:

New Enrichment!

Saturday, November 11th, 2017

We thought the chimpanzees should get something new and exciting since we raised more than expected on Giving Day for Apes…



For Patti and Doris Sims

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

We have a very touching day of sanctuary to start this Jamieween day sponsored by Anne Roberson, Cheryl Baldwin and Debbie Watt in honor of one of our wonderful volunteer caregivers, Patti Sims, and in memory of Patti’s mother, Doris Sims. They shared this touching message about their lovely gift:

“We are making this donation to honor Patti Sims in memory of her mother, Doris Sims, who died on October 13th. We selected October 31st because it is Jamie’s 40th birthday and we thought that would mean a lot to Patti. She loves Jamie and all of the chimps so much.”

Anne, Cheryl and Debbie, what a lovely thing to do for Patti and the chimps. Thank you so much for honoring Doris in such a thoughtful and compassionate way.

Patti, we are all holding you in our hearts and thoughts and we’re so glad to be able to honor your mom with you today. You do so much to make a lasting difference in the lives of our fellow animals in the world and we hope this Jamieween brings lightness, comfort and some happy to your big, compassionate heart. Thanks for being part of our chimp family.

Patti, Lynn and the birthday lady, Jamie:

Jody and Missy:

Jody kiss Missy